Common Name: Asterina starfish
Scientific Name: Asterina spp.
Typically encountered on the aquarium glass and rock, this small starfish can grow to sizes of up tp 1 cm in size. These little stars come in various colours, light beige to white and rusty red to grey/black. They are typicaly observed to have extra or missing legs in the aquarium, but can have the regular count of five legs aswell. They are considered beneficial to a marine system in that they are opportunistic feeders, grazing on algae-encrusted hard surfaces. In the past they were considered highly desirable and a great asset to a tank, helping to remove detritus and cleaning rocks. With some unconfirmed reports of coral loss due to this starfish, many people have adopted the approach of eradication and simply manually remove them from the tank. There are some biological solutions to remove these starfish from the tank. the top candidates for this job will be the Harlequin shrimp (Humenocera elegans), which feeds exclusively on starfish. And Nardoa sea star, the Nardoa is regularly reported to consume the Asterina sea stars.
Common Opinion: USE WITH CAUTION